By Jim Breslo
Published July 09, 2019
The "raise your hand if" questions were by far the best questions in the last Democratic debates. With the second set of debates coming later this month, don’t be surprised if the Democratic Party insists that such questions not be allowed. The questions proved far too damaging to their candidates in the first debates. In fact, President Trump found their answers to one question to be so damaging that he declared the race over!
The problem for Democrats is that the questions require them to answer simple "yes" or "no" questions with a simple yes or no! There is nothing politicians dislike more. It prevents them from turning to their tried-and-true tactic of never directly answering a question, turning instead to their talking points. (Assuming they can remember them! See Joe Biden's performance.)
The “raise your hand” questions were quite illuminating. Let’s review.
A question at the second debate: “Raise your hand if you think it should be a civil offense rather than a criminal offense to cross the border without documentation.” All but two candidates raised their hands, assuming you count Joe Biden’s feeble hand raise (admittedly even an NFL-style review of his hand raise would have likely proved inconclusive after reviewing all available angles).
For many years, Democrats have refused to call those who cross the border illegally “illegal,” choosing instead to call them “undocumented.” Until now, it was assumed this was simply a politically correct term used only so as not to depersonalize or overly condemn them. But with this simple debate question, we learned that major Democratic leaders believe it should not be against the law to evade U.S. border patrol agents and sneak into our country.
Trump better make sure his Twitter account is active.
Even President Obama's Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson found these answers to be so untenable he was compelled to write an opinion column on Sunday calling the candidates out. He wrote, "This is tantamount to a public declaration (repeated and amplified by smugglers in Central America) that our borders are effectively open to all; this will increase the recent levels of monthly apprehensions at our southern border."
The only candidates who did not raise their hands were from Colorado: Gov. John Hickenlooper and Sen. Michael Bennett. But in post-debate polls, the two of them combined gathered support from less than 1 percent of respondents! So much for providing correct answers.
Another question from the second debate: "Raise your hand if your government plan would provide coverage for undocumented immigrants."
Everyone raised their hand. Again, the candidates demonstrated how radically far left the party has moved since Obama left office - in this case, on health care. Obama and Biden pushed through a fairly radical plan that required all Americans to purchase health insurance. Biden infamously called ObamaCare a "big f---ing deal." Apparently, he no longer supports his own plan. Instead, he, along with Sens. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Mayor Pete Buttigieg all support health care run by the federal government, free to all 327 million Americans, and free to all 11 million (or so) "undocumented" Americans.
I am afraid to hear what Biden would choose to call this plan if it passed.
Responding to these radical positions, Trump tweeted, “All Democrats just raised their hands for giving millions of illegal aliens unlimited health care. How about taking care of American Citizens first!? That’s the end of that race!”
Actually, it was only the 10 Democrats on the second evening; the question was not asked at the first debate. But it appears the only viable candidate from the first evening was Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who also supports providing such coverage.
A question at both debates: “Who here would abolish their private health care plan in favor of a government-run plan?”
Considering the candidates' zeal to out-progressive the other, it is somewhat surprising that this question only ensnared four candidates, albeit three who are considered leaders: Sanders, Harris, and Warren (New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio was the fourth).
It is one thing to suggest that the federal government run a national health care system free for all. But it is a whole other kind of radical to say that people should no longer have the freedom to purchase, and companies the freedom to sell, private health plans as an alternative or supplement. It is hard to imagine how this would even be constitutional.
Harris, the former California attorney general, perhaps realized this and has since backtracked, claiming that she did not understand the question. She says she thought the question pertained to whether she would give up her personal insurance in favor of a government plan. Upon further inspection, her interpretation appears to be correct. The question asked who would “abolish their” health plan.
Either way, it was a very poorly worded question. It was worded the exact same way both nights, so shame on MSNBC. But Harris’ answer did not look much better even with her interpretation. She is saying she would personally prefer a government health care plan over a private health care plan. This demonstrates that in Harris’ world, the government does things better than the private sector. Most do not live in that world.
Here's to hoping that debate moderators will ask even more “raise your hand if” questions. Here are a few ideas likely to get most to raise their hands and further expose how looney the candidates have gone.
Raise your hand if you believe the Betsy Ross flag should not be flown at public events.
Raise your hand if you believe college should be free for all.
Raise your hand if you believe abortion should be permitted in the ninth month.
Raise your hand if you believe Trump should be impeached.
Trump better make sure his Twitter account is active.